Hong Kong’s Jade Market
Jade is a fantastic souvenir to take home from Hong Kong. It’s known for its simple combination of beauty and purity and is traditionally associated with a long life and good health. Chinese grandmothers often buy a piece of jade for newborns because of the belief that it will ward off a variety of health hazards. These beliefs have made jade an important aspect of tradition in Hong Kong since Neolithic times. While Hong Kong’s Jade Market has not been around that long (it was started in the early 1950s), it is a major roost of jade traders in town.
Located on Kansu and Battery streets; from the outside the market is not much to look at. As you enter the gates a lively world of stones varying in hues from deep pure green through yellow then passing into browns and whites is exposed. You can expect to see secret hand signals flying as experienced buyers snatch up the top quality stones. While jade is the most coveted item at the market, you are sure to find a variety of other exciting items such as earthenware teapots, carvings from vegetable ivory, even strings of river pearls knotted while you wait. Most stalls will not take credit cards so cash is king here. If you are not an expert you can always have your purchase tested at Jade Plaza. Or, take part in a private jade appreciation class at a jewelry shop.
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(Photo by Flickr user Paularps)